Sunday Suggestion – The Clash – Clampdown

By the turn of 1979, The Clash had become the enduring force of Punk that the Sex Pistols would not be. But at this time, they were starting to enthuse their punk with reggae and elements of new wave into their sound which culminated in on of the greatest albums of all time with London Calling. It is one of the most influential pieces of political statement in music that has been produced on this island. Almost every song was not just the worthwhile fusion of genres and truth telling. One example from the vast array on this album is ‘Clampdown’. Musically, it is the simple, yet effective combination of Strummer’s rough and unmoved vocal along with Mick Jones’ softer and more delicately animated vocal. Not only offering the harmony but the depth and a shifting nature in addition to this. The instrumentals carry out the same tasks with the jolting percussive beat, the rough wash of the guitars and the bass line anchor with the wiry lead guitar solos and ringing organs. This changes with Jones’ sole vocal part with the guitars shimmering and glistening in all directions. The lyrics too are about the endless, fruitless work of people in the capital system and with subtle references to the rise of Nazism and Revolution too. A song with as much lyrical relevance as musical relevance and it’s simply a hook filled anthem on top of that too. A token of the Clash’s talent and legacy.

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